Turning the traditional idea of a police station on its head, this building with its expansive fa├žade offers a welcoming impression to the community it serves. An unimposing palette of materials was carefully chosen to be warming, with timber and terracotta brightened with soft golden lighting.

Natural lighting flows through the large glass doors and windows into the atrium and its timber veneers and wooden seating.

IN BRIEF

Reconnect policing back with the community. Design a 24-hour police station, consolidating three existing stations in order to more efficiently serve the public, while providing state-of-the-art facilities for police.

Encourage maximum interaction between police and the community. Provide contemporary office accommodation, flexible training and meeting facilities, a gym, interview rooms and operational facilities. Enable maximum flexibility for workplace and technological changes as well as being open and inviting.

The building should reflect the needs and opportunities of policing in the 21st century while ensuring space, proportions, colours and materials that suit the immediate streetscape.

ARCHITECT’S WORDS

Richard Jones, Design Director, (FJMT).
We sought to escape the existing architectural paradigms of the contemporary police station, characterised by opacity, security and fenced compounds.

Instead, an emphasis is placed upon the police station as a truly public community building: inviting, accessible and part of the civic fabric of the neighbourhood. However, the same strict technical and, in particular, security requirements must be achieved to create a safe working environment, all within the very tight cost constraints for this typology.

The intention is to reinforce the Victoria Police’s vision of a more open and interactive approach to contemporary policing.

The more public elements of the station are composed within an overarching formal frame, addressing the primary street and lifting the scale of the building to the adjacent Masonic Hall.

This profiled concrete frame is like an abstraction of a portico, enlarging the entrance and sense of invitation while positioning the public meeting and control rooms in a tight composition and opening them to natural light from above.

The work spaces, meeting rooms, sally port, holding rooms and gymnasium within the station are gathered around a central top-lit atrium, lined with timber.

The atrium is the central circulation spine, a place for informal meetings and special events with a stage created by the switchback stair, but also an honorific space of contemplation to the nature of community policing.

Within this top-lit space is an integrated exhibition/artwork displaying the historical progression of the local police from the turn of the twentieth century through to the present time.

An emphasis has been placed upon the expressive and tectonic development of natural materials within the primary public spaces of the station. Terracotta tiles and curved Victorian Ash panels framed within profiled off-form concrete characterise the street address, while the atrium is lined with Victorian Ash panels and lit from above, with light reflected around curved cloud-like baffles.

The perimeter of the main station volume is a layered system of glass operable panels, a captured linear landscaped garden, and a wall of continuous metal louvre grilles which provide environmental mediation and security. A challenge was to create a building that connected directly to its surrounding landscape and provided equitable access while still having a presence between the two storey buildings adjacent.

DESIGN CHALLENGE

The overall design response has not just restricted itself to issues relating to the building, but has reflected upon local climatic conditions and the long term impact of the development. Considerable attention has been given to provisions that could be made within the development to ensure its ongoing energy efficiency and environmental responsiveness.

The new Bayside Police Station, with its functional and visual relevance and impact on the vicinity, must be critically considered in its context in regards to the livelihood and vibrancy of the existing precinct and residential areas.

The design of the facility aspires to enhance the vibrancy and quality of life to its surrounds by providing a building that is environmentally sustainable, operationally effective and appropriately scaled.

Seen as an opportunity, the building explores ways of conveying a method of operational transparency whilst maintaining utmost security of sensitive and critical areas. As a result, the cleanly composed thresholds of the facades of the police complex are inviting and engaging towards the on-looking public.

SUSTAINABILITY
A key objective for this project was to establish an Australian excellence standard of environmentally sustainable design. Sustainable design elements were viewed as important within this project as the Victoria Police are a role model in all aspects for the wider community. As such the Environmentally Sustainable Design took a holistic approach.

Fjmt’s ESD approach was generated from a number of key design principles: a strong understanding of the urban context, the functional brief, reducing the reliance on traditional energy sources, and maximising the use of natural light, water, heating and ventilation. The design seeks to establish a contemporary sense of place providing an open and inviting “public” facility with strong connection to its setting.

ESD initiatives include Lighting Control System; External Shading Devices; Landscaping with native planting; Thermal Mass Materials; Water Harvesting; Solar Hot Water; Waste and Recycling Initiatives as well as Roof and wall insulation designed to minimise heat gain in summer and heat loss in winter.

Fjmt has sought to maximise natural light into all work areas and provide as much induced local and native greenery into the perimeter as possible in order to provide a comfortable and optimum level of working environment. Green vegetation on the periphery provides an engaging visual aspect from the internal spaces outwards while acting as subtle privacy screens from the exterior. A prominent central atrium provides subtle south facing natural daylight into the building, creating a sense of openness when one enters the building.

ACCOLADES

• Bayside Built Environment Awards, Most Creative Building Design, 2010
• Bayside Built Environment Awards, Best New or Renovation to a Commercial Building, 2010
• Bayside Built Environment Awards, Best Ecologically Sustainable Design, 2010
• Australian Interior Design Awards Public Design Award, Highly commended, 2011

QUOTES
‘Working with FJMT was an absolute delight. Bayside is a fabulous result and is being held up in here as the exemplar Police Station in terms of design, functional layout and finish... You should all rightly feel well proud of the achievement.’
Bruce Crowe, Manager Capital Works, Victoria Police

‘The Mayor, Cr Clifford Hayes said Council recognised designers and architects whose work showed sensitivity to Bayside’s neighbourhood character, streetscape quality, local identity, heritage values, public places and the natural environment.
“We amended the focus of the award this year to ensure that proper recognition was given to the ecologically sustainable development category. Council hosts this event to recognise and promote the excellent work of designers in Bayside,” said Cr Hayes.’
Bayside Built Environment Awards

PRODUCTS

WALLS
BORAL BRICKS, PRECAST CONCRETE
MOEDING ALPHATON, TERRACOTTA TILES

CLADDING
JAMES HARDIE WALL & FLOOR PRODUCTS, FIBRE CEMENT
ALUCOBOND ARCHITECTURAL, 400S METAL CLADDING

ROOF
BLUESCOPE LYSAGHT, KLIP-LOCK 700 HI-STRENGTH

CEILING
ARMSTRONG CEILING SYSTEMS, ACOUSTIC CEILING TILES
ARCHITECTURAL CEILING SYSTEM, METAL PAN CEILINGS

SKYLIGHTS/ ENTRY LOUVRES
JOHN WATERS INDUSTRIES, ANODISED ALUMINIUM

PAINT (ON STEELWORK)
DULUX, FERREKO-MIO ST ENOCH GREY/ NATURAL GREY

RENDER AND PAINT
GRANO CLASSIC

HARDWARE
LOCKWOOD AUSTRALIA
DORMAKABA AUSTRALIA

JOINERY
AUSCRAFT SHOPFITTERS, VICTORIAN OAK OVER E0/E1 PLYWOOD AND MDF DECORATIVE TIMBER VENEER CEILINGS AND SOFFIT

FLOORING
TILES

SADLERSTONE PEARL SMOOTH, PRECAST CONCRETE TILES
JOHNSON TILES, CERAMIC TILES

CARPET
GODFREY HIRST AUSTRALIA, CARPETS

SURFACES
LAMINEX
CORIAN
PARBURY BUILDING PRODUCTS, TREZZINI

HEATING/COOLING SYSTEMS
DAIKIN AUSTRALIA, VARIABLE REFRIGERANT FLOW SYSTEM
HEATEX, HEAT RECOVERY UNIT

FURNITURE
ZENITH INTERIORS, WORKSTATIONS AND SHELVING
KFIVE, FEATURE SEATING
WILKHAHN ASIA PACIFIC, CONFERENCE TABLES AND CHAIRS

KITCHEN APPLIANCES
MIELE AUSTRALIA